Joe Apu, Bamako
Captain of the D’ Tigers of Nigeria, Ike Diogu has promised Nigerians that he and his colleagues would be ready to give their all to ensure the top spot in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 African qualifiers billed for Lagos Nigeria in June.
Diogu told Daily Sunsports exclusively in Bamako, Mali that though they are taking every game step by step, he is sure of Nigeria moving to the next round of the qualifying series on a clean bill as they are not set to drop any game in Lagos.
“We’re happy we took all three games in Mali and hope to repeat it when the teams converge in Lagos come June. Playing competitively before our home
fans is one that that excites us. And that is a lot of responsibility because we cannot afford to fall before our fans. While not underrating any team on our home court come June but I’m already looking forward to the next round.
“The opposition in the round of six teams does not bother us because our ultimate goal getting one of the five World Cup tickets. I believe in the players we have and the coaching crew to get the job done.”
Meanwhile, the leader of delegation of the Nigeria team to Mali, Osita Nwachukwu who is a member of the board said that preparations are already in place for Nigeria to host in June. “The Nigeria Basket- ball Federation, NBBF, is leaving nothing
no stone unturned to host the qualifiers in June.”
Also speaking on Nigeria’s readiness for the June window, Col. Sam Ahmedu revealed that three venues in Lagos are on the card. “Three venues are available to us and they are the Landmark event centre, the GT Bank events arena and the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos. However, the NBBF board would meet to decide on which venue best venue. The capacity to meet FIBA requirements are available to the board,” he stated.
The coach Nwora tutored side beat Uganda, Rwanda and host Mali to go top of Group B of the World Cup 2019 African qualifiers.